Press Release
May 2, 2018


The ball is now with Congress and it needs to know where it stands on contractualization, Senator Chiz Escudero said urging the two chambers to pass a law that will put an end to contractualization and will strengthen workers' security of tenure, after the President issued an executive order (EO) that prohibits illegal contracting and sub-contracting on Labor day.

According to Escudero, essentially, the Labor Code did not prohibit contractualization, but the executive department can regulate it or prohibit it outright.

"The law gives the executive department the choice. Now the president, perhaps, wants to tell the Congress, kung ipagbabawal ninyo pwede bang ipagbawal ninyo na lang? Huwag ninyo nang ipasa sa amin. Essentially that's what he is trying do because as policy makers, it is actually Congress' job to determine the direction that any administration of government should or will take," Escudero said.

Moreover, according to the senator, the Labor Code has been amended several times by Congress, however, the provision on contractualization has not yet been touched.

"So perhaps it is about time the Congress indeed looks into it and decides once and for all whether to be prohibited or we remain in the same regime we had remained for the past 40 years, which is it is the choice of the executive," he said.

The EO issued by the president, according to Escudero, may not have ended endo (end of contract) per se but "provided certain rules and set off a policy direction along the line" which is a "big push to put an end to contractualization."

The veteran lawmaker also reiterated that in fact, the government is the biggest employer of contractual employees, both national and local.

"Ang problema mo lang gobyerno mismo ang number one violator. Ang may pinakamaraming contractual, at job orders sa buong Pilipinas ay gobyerno. Nagsimula kasi 'yan noong nagrationalization plan ang gobyerno."

Escudero also added that the government should lead by example and fix the problem of contractualization in the public sector first, before slamming the private sector.

"Essentially, it would have been nice if the government started it first. And then sige, ayusin muna namin iyong sa amin. Ngayon sa private sector magta-transition tayo."

Furthermore, according to the 2016 Integrated Survey on Labor and Employment, there are a total of 1.190 million non-regular workers in the country, which include probationary, casual, contractual/project-based and seasonal workers.

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